27th Conference of the Council of European Studies: Judit Kálmán’s Summary and PresentationJudit Kálmán, senior lecturer at the Institute of Economics and Public Policy (Department of Comparative and Institutional Economics) participated in the Conference of the Council of European Studies (CES). Her presentation focused on her current research regarding gender differences in the link between work status and subjective well-being across different European welfare state regimes. Below you will find her account of the event and the abstract of her presentation.
The Council of European Studies (CES) is one of the most important international and truly inter-disciplinary professional organizations, a true academic community of scholars to produce, support, and recognize outstanding, multi-disciplinary research on Europe through a wide range of programs and initiatives. Its conferences are prestigious, with the participation of large numbers of American and European researchers, and it is an honor to be accepted for presentation.
This year – just like most other international conferences – the CES conference was also virtual only. My presentation* was based on my ongoing research, entitled ’Gender Differences in Effects of Labor Market Status on Subjective Well-Being Across European Welfare Regimes’. The panel I participated in was successful, I received several useful comments and suggestions regarding my research. I also became a member of several research networks within CES, which are excellent for exchange of information and building professional contacts.
This research investigates what gender differences exist in the relationship of work and subjective well-being across different European welfare regimes. Besides estimating individual-specific socio-demographic effects, especially that of labor market status it emphasizes the institutional context of different welfare regimes, tries to measure effects of the generosity of welfare policy schemes (unemployment, parental leave, childcare) and some macroeconomic factors (GDP, social and ALMP expenditures) on individual life satisfaction. Using micro-data from ESS 1-7 waves from 22 countries, adding context variables from various sources (e.g. Scruggs CWED2 welfare generosity scores, OECD, EIGE gender equality index etc.) it applies a pooled cross-section analysis with relevant multivariate methods). Apart from individual factors, it confirms welfare and gender regime typology, as well as the finer measure of generosity of welfare provisions to matter. Life-satisfaction is lowest in the post-socialist Eastern and Southern European countries, even among those with paid employment, but especially among the unemployed. After controlling for various individual and country level factors, direct negative effects of liberal and continental regimes are apparent, but also in various cross-level interactions. In Post-socialist and Southern regimes, it seems that traditional gender norms still prevail, however in liberal and continental regimes the hard reconciliation of work and family affect gender differences in life satisfaction compared to Nordic countries. Apart from a new insight on gender-specific determinants of the work-happiness puzzle, the cross-welfare regimes comparison is a contribution to the happiness, labor market and welfare state literatures and provides valuable input for highly prioritized public policy themes.